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Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola

Prince of Renaissance Architecture

Palazzo dei Banchi

One of the greatest and most innovative architects of the Renaissance, Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola (1507–73) represents the point where the august style of the High Renaissance tips over into Mannerism. He came from the small town of Vignola outside Modena (his name is usually just shortened to 'Vignola'), and in Rome he became a favourite of the powerful Farnese family. He was one of the Italian architects and artists working for François I at Fontainebleau, along with Sebastiano Serlio from Bologna; together they designed one of Bologna's most striking residences, the Palazzo Bocchi.

Afterwards Vignola returned triumphantly to Rome, where he built the splendid Villa Farnese at Caprarola, Villa Lante at Bagnaia and the Villa Giulia, and the churches of the Gesù and Sant'Andrea in Via Flaminia in Rome; he took over Michelangelo's work on St Peter's, and was buried in the Pantheon.

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Renaissance Art and Architecture

Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Images by Paul Hermans, PD Art, Warburg, PD Art